BROWN DAILY HERALD vol. cxlix, no. 23
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Prosecutors sue company New publications feature diverse voices OBSIDIAN and owned by Corp. fellow Vagabond Magazine USIS, owned by Jonathan Nelson’s equity firm, accused of mishandling background checks
lawsuit. A spokesperson for the firm declined to comment. As stated in a congressional report released Feb. 11, USIS accepted $16 million in rewards from the federal government while fraudulently failing to complete 40 percent, or at least 665,000, of its cases from 2008 to 2012, according to the Washington Post. USIS was paid by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management based on the number of background checks completed, in an effort to increase efficiency, leading the company to close cases that were not finished or comprehensively researched, the New York Times reported. After Altegrity was purchased by Providence Equity Partners in 2007, the firm implemented a new incentive structure intended to boost efficiency in 2008 — the same year the alleged corner-cutting began, the Post reported. The Justice Department joined a “whistleblower’s lawsuit” in January, accusing USIS of “dumping” incomplete cases, the Post reported. “Flushed everything like a dead goldfish,” one USIS manager wrote in reference to the practice in a company email. But USIS chief executive Sterling Phillips said Feb. 11 that the responsibility of granting security clearances » See NELSON, page 2
By EMMA HARRIS STAFF WRITER
United States Investigation Services, a federally contracted background check company transitively owned by Corporation Fellow Jonathan Nelson ’77 P’07 P’09, is amidst a U.S. Department of Justice lawsuit for “taking shortcuts” on at least 40 percent of its cases. Two of these cases happen to be Edward Snowden, the former Central Intelligence Agency employee famous for leaking National Security Agency secrets, and Aaron Alexis, who killed 12 people at the Naval Yard in Washington in September. The high-profile incidents have sparked media attention about USIS, though neither case is mentioned in the federal lawsuit. Nelson is the founder and owner of Providence Equity Partners, a private equity firm that owns Altegrity, which is an information services company. USIS, located in Falls Church, Va., is one of Altegrity’s four businesses. But Providence Equity Partners itself is not named in the Justice Department’s
provide outlets for multimedia expression By SOPHIE YAN STAFF WRITER
Two new student-run publications, OBSIDIAN and Vagabond Magazine, have established presences on campus this semester. These online outlets each fill a niche, providing multimedia platforms for students to present work that might not have a place elsewhere.
ARTS & CULTURE
Raising awareness, raising voices “When people ask me what OBSIDIAN is, my short answer is that it’s a black literary space for students on campus,” said Jasmin Jones ’17, one of the magazine’s co-founders. “It’s for anyone who’s a child of the African diaspora. It’s for marginalized voices.” OBSIDIAN was born out of the collaboration between three students — Maya Finoh ’17, Paige Morris ’16 and Jones. “We noticed that there wasn’t really a space specifically for black voices and black expression,” Morris said. Finoh, whose family hails from » See MAGAZINES, page 8
COURTESY OF TOM SULLIVAN
In this photograph, part of a series for Vagabond, a Chilean student protects himself from tear gas released in the aftermath of a student march.
Off-beat ramen bar opens downtown City Council supports
Ken’s Ramen brings stereotypical college staple to new level in eclectic atmosphere
Resolution supporting federal restrictions on antibiotic use in factory farms approved Feb. 6
By MARGARET NICKENS SENIOR STAFF WRITER
Barely larger than a dorm room, Ken’s Ramen disappears into Washington Street, hiding behind a blockade of excited college students and locals and a series of papered-up windows. The noodle bar is hosting a presoft opening Feb. 12 through March 1 with a limited menu and reduced hours. On a weekend, you’ll likely find interested patrons arriving before the restaurant opens at 6 p.m. to try to ensure a spot in the small restaurant, which has only a few tables and seats at the bar. The wait for one of these spots lasted around 45 minutes even after arriving close to opening time on a recent night — an outside wait that, in this weather, can become irksome, especially because there is little along the barren street to occupy your attention. Attempts to peek over the white paper into the restaurant’s interior proved vain, providing few
By ALON GALOR STAFF WRITER
The Providence City Council approved a resolution in support of federal restrictions on the use of antibiotics in factory farms Feb. 6. The council may be the first in the country to pass such regulations. “It’s largely a symbolic act,” said Gus Fuguitt, spokesman for Food and Water Watch — an NGO and consumer rights group based in Washington. “The resolution simply calls on every member of Rhode Island’s congressional delegation to support any legislation that would ban the misuse of antibiotics on factory farms.” Though antibiotics were historically reserved for the treatment of disease, factory farms have been using them for nontherapeutic reasons since the 1950s by mixing them in cattle feed to promote weight gain and prevent infections.
MARGARET NICKENS / HERALD
Ken’s paitan ramen, a chicken-based noodle dish, is one of the two entrees offered in the pre-soft opening of Ken’s Ramen. hints to what waited beyond the chilly sidewalk. Thus it was certainly surprising to find that a giant portrait of Fred Flintstone waiting behind the restaurant’s closed doors. The portrait complements Ken’s upbeat, relaxed atmosphere. The bar features sleek light wood paneling, which looks fashionable but not flashy. From your seat, you can see giant vats of
ramen noodles and the colorfully attired chefs, bobbing their heads along to Kanye classics. Even the website, which features a Biggie Smalls quote and a picture of Abraham Lincoln in a paper hat, speaks to the restaurant’s off-beat vibe. The pre-soft opening’s set menu offers two appetizer, two main course and three drink options. To start off » See RAMEN, page 4
Arts & Culture
Providence Children’s Film Festival features films made by children for the first time
Chafee signs executive order creating the Executive Climate Change Council
Rhythm of Change festival blends traditional Malian dance with social activism
Alumni Anniversary Exhibition opens at List Art Center for 250th celebration
Approximately 80 percent of all antibiotics sold nationally are sold to factory farms, according to a 2011 report from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Alarmed by these practices, the World Health Organization, American Medical Association, American Public Health Association, American Academy of Pediatrics and Infectious Disease Society of America have issued statements calling for controls on the use of antibiotics in livestock for subtheraputic purposes, according to Food and Water Watch. “As a biologist, the biggest concern to me is that the enormously widespread usage of antibiotics promotes the natural selection of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, which poses a serious hazard to human health,” said Professor of Biology Ken Miller ’70 P’02. In a report on antibiotic resistance threats published last year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that at least 2,049,442 illnesses and 23,000 deaths are caused annually as a result of antibiotic-resistant infections. “It is clear that conditions on farms and ranches have led to increased » See ANTIBIOTICS, page 3 t o d ay
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2 university news
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Cornell professor decries liberalism and exemptionalism Peter Katzenstein, professor of international studies, criticizes current U.S. foreign policy values By JOSEPH ZAPPA SENIOR STAFF WRITER
“Liberalism, at its core, is empty,” said Peter Katzenstein, professor of international studies at Cornell. “There’s nothing there. It’s like the wizard of Oz,” he said, adding that Americans have continually attempted to reinvent liberalism’s core values. Around 40 faculty members and students came to hear Katzenstein speak on globalization in the second installment of the Watson Institute’s Security Seminar Series yesterday. Katzenstein lambasted American exceptionalism as “collective idiocy everybody shares,” calling the United States “distinctive” but not “exceptional.” American exemptionalism — the idea that the United States is exempt from rules that must be applied to foreign nations — is ludicrous and propagated by Congress, he said. In addition to unpacking American
exceptionalism, Katzenstein examined the way scholars classify civilizations. Proponents of liberal cosmopolitanism are “just like the racists of the 19th century who argued that there is only one right answer,” he said. Katzenstein defined liberal cosmopolitanism as the belief that ideological pluralism does not exist and that those coming from a certain civilization can be broken down into a single community. Moving past this belief is vital to understanding globalization, Katzenstein said. He rejected the popular view of globalization as an east versus west enterprise, viewing it rather as the “reconfiguration of identities” that results from several types of civilizational interactions. It is also important to understand that civilizations themselves do not truly interact, but rather serve as the contexts within which actors — such as nationstates and individuals — deal with each other, he said. “Civilizations are like a town hall meeting in which we debate our options,” Katzenstein said. “Essentialism argues there’s a single voice,” he said, but “civilizations are built on intellectual, artistic, creative disagreements.”
RYAN WALSH / HERALD
Peter Katzenstein, professor of international studies at Cornell, speaks at the Watson Institute for International Studies. “Civilizations are like a town hall meeting in which we debate our options,” he said yesterday. Katzenstein argued that control power, the concept that one actor directly oppresses another, has become less relevant as individual actors have grown more influential. He highlighted the increasing importance of polycentric innovation — a Foucauldian concept meaning innovation coming from a variety of sources — in an age of globalization.
He cited the emergence of the Nigerian film industry, which was based on one investor’s decision and influenced by the power of stock traders to flip the market. Katzenstein also debunked various myths about cross-cultural interactions and Anglo-American civilization’s role in these exchanges. While many scholars such as Louis
U. staff battles snow storms with salt and plows Brown has spent $385,000 on snow removal this winter, $200,000 less than last year’s total cost By CAMILLA BRANDFIELD-HARVEY CONTRIBUTING WRITER
When it comes to snow removal, it is the events — not the inches — that matter. For the University’s custodians and grounds crew, an “event” is any occasion when staff members must go out to remove ice or snow from campus walkways, stairs and athletic fields. This season, Brown’s crew has handled 23 events, with 11 in February alone, Vice President for Facilities Management Stephen Maiorisi said. Since December, Facilities has handled another heavy season, though the snow cover has yet to surpass last year’s record. At 48 inches in total, the cumulative coverage is 10 inches fewer than last year’s 58 inches. Though a difference of 10 inches seems minor, the overall cost is significantly less, Maiorisi said. Whereas Brown spent $585,000 last season, snow removal so far this year has cost $385,000. Maiorisi said he expects and hopes expenditures will not reach last year’s level. Snow removal costs are a fraction of Facilities’ overall budget. The majority of the seasonal costs stem from employee overtime, Maiorisi said. On snow removal alone, the custodians and grounds crew have worked a little over 2,000 hours this winter. But the number of overtime hours depends on the timing of the storms, Maiorisi said. “There were times when we maybe had just as much snow but we don’t call people for overtime, because they’re here anyway,” he said. This year, much of the work has taken place during regular weekday hours — a more difficult task for Facilities, as workers must clear snow before students trek
to class, as opposed to weekends, when Facilities can take more time to clear the pavement, Maiorisi said. A group of 150 custodians in four separate shifts manages snow at a variety of campus locations. They also remove snow from sidewalks frequented by students that “do not get plowed by current owners,” Maiorisi said. Some students said they blame the timing of the rain and snowfall for more slippery sidewalks and some inconsistency in removal. “The first couple of snowfalls the roads were cleared and the salt was put out. But not for the most recent one,” Takeru Nagayoshi ’14 said. “I wouldn’t say it’s frustrating per se. This year we had a lot more snow.” Thomas Abebe ’17 said workers sometimes clear snow but leave a wet layer that turns to ice in the cold weather. Though he wasn’t sure how snow removal has been handled in previous years, he said, “I haven’t had any problems with it.” Most students interviewed did not have an opinion on the matter and commended Facilities for its efficient work. Both the Boston Globe and the Providence Journal recently reported that the city of Providence has run out of salt. The Rhode Island Department of Transportation was down to between 4,000 and 5,000 tons of salt last week — “the bare minimum that it would use in a storm,” the Journal reported — and will not receive another shipment until early March. Meanwhile, Brown’s salt supply is stable. So far this year, Facilities has used around 260 tons of sand and salt, compared to 150 tons last year. “We’ve used a good amount of salt this year, but we aren’t forecasting any shortage,” Maiorisi said. Weather forecasts show more snow on Wednesday and Thursday this week. For any treacherous patches of ice to come, Nagayoshi is prepared. “I’m a senior,” he said. “I’ve mastered the slip dance.”
DAVID BRAUN / HERALD
Facilities Management’s snow plows tackle the heavy snow season. There have been 48 inches of snow since December.
DAVID BRAUN / HERALD
A grounds crew member removes snow so students don’t slip. The custodians and grounds crew have worked over 2,000 hours this winter.
Hartz and Samuel Huntington argued that American ideology can be summarized as a commitment to the liberal tradition, several ideological traditions have been at play within a larger American civilizational context, Katzenstein said. Among these ideologies are race and republicanism, as Rogers Smith asserted.
» NELSON, from page 1 “lies solely with the (NSA),” deflecting responsibility for the Snowden and Alexis cases, the Post reported. Yet House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) wrote that the “security clearances that both Snowden and Alexis received from the federal government enabled them to carry out their heinous acts” in a Nov. 20 letter to Katherine Archuleta, Office of Personnel Management director. USIS has taken measures to comply with OPM standards in response to the allegations, including hiring new leadership and strenghtening “oversight procedures,” said a spokesperson in a statement, adding that the company will “remain focused on delivering the highest-quality service under our OPM contracts.” The USIS leadership has seen 24 executive positions turn over since allegations began, including the chief executive, chief financial officer and head of the investigations services division, the Post reported. USIS was suspected of fraud in 2011. Robert Calamia, vice president of field operations at USIS, received a letter from OPM questioning the reported completion of 13,000 reports by four investigators in one week. Calamia claimed this was an error at the time, the Post reported. Providence Equity Partners was investigated for tax fraud in 2012, with a New York Attorney General subpoena potentially tying the company to an income tax-evasion investment scheme, The Herald reported at the time. “Jonathan Nelson is a valued member of the Brown University Corporation,” wrote Marisa Quinn, vice president of public affairs and University relations, in an email to The Herald this week. Nelson personally donated $10 million to the University for the creation of the Jonathan Nelson ’77 Fitness Center and two new professorships in 2004. A representative from USIS could not be reached for comment.
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Children’s film festival showcases young voices, themes This year’s program first to showcase work of young filmmakers in screening and panel By EMILY DOGLIO STAFF WRITER
“I’m not actually a bully, but I hope I did a convincing job,” said one of the young actors from the short film “Robot and Boy” during a questionand-answer session Sunday at the Providence Children’s Film Festival. For the first time, the annual festival included an official program featuring short films made by children under 18, both independently and through PCFF workshops, said Mike Russo, program moderator, filmmaker and educator. “Young people are the most exciting to work with,” Russo said, adding that it is “fun and empowering” for him to “offer access and opportunities” to child filmmakers. The show included a screening and panel in the Rhode Island School of Design Museum’s Metcalf Auditorium Sunday, as part of the 10-daylong PCFF, which began Feb. 13. Children, families and adults filled the auditorium quickly, and the free event reached capacity. The films varied in “level of polished-ness,” said Anisa Raoof, executive director of the festival, adding that the festival aims to create a film experience that extends beyond watching the movies through exposing audience members to the craft and process of filmmaking. The youth show “really speaks to our mission of providing an opportunity for children to learn about film and storytelling,” Raoof said. The PCFF was launched five years
ago by a group of parents who wanted an alternative source of quality independent films for their families, Raoof said. “Since then, we’ve grown every year,” she added. The show included films as long as 24 minutes and as short as one minute. “Robot and Boy” was the longest film screened and garnered much of the program’s attention. The film was directed by youth filmmakers Dylan and Ethan Itkin. The film was partly inspired by movies such as “E.T.,” the Itkin brothers said during the question-and-answer session. “Robot and Boy” utilizes green-screen technology and features the story of a bullied kid who meets and befriends a robot boy from another planet. “Bad Day,” an almost entirely silent 19-minute film directed by Salome Tkebuchava, was another standout. The film aims to send a message to its audience about the value of musicians in society, Tkebuchava said during the panel. “Anyone can film,” Tkebuchava said when asked to offer advice for other young filmmakers. Shorter films included director Cameron Harrington’s “The Golf Story: A Short Film,” which uses advanced editing techniques to portray the exciting journey of a golf ball after it is hit, and “Cat Power,” from the Reel Grrls Workshop — a nonprofit initiative in Seattle aimed at teaching filmmaking and leadership skills to girls ages 9 to 19 — which explores gender roles. The Youth Filmmaker Show was part of the programming for the final day of the 2014 PCFF, and the festival committee plans to continue events throughout the year, Raoff wrote in an email to The Herald.
COURTESY OF MORAYO SAYLES
Children and teenagers who made films featured at the Providence Children’s Film Festival take part in a question-and-answer session Sunday.
COURTESY OF MORAYO SAYLES
This was the first year that the film festival showed movies made by children, ranging in length from one to 24 minutes. The free event, which took place at the Rhode Island School of Design museum, reached capacity.
NE WS IN BRIEF
» ANTIBIOTICS, from page 1
Chafee forms Executive Climate Change Council Gov. Lincoln Chafee ’75 P’14 P’17 signed an executive order Friday creating the Rhode Island Executive Climate Change Council. The newly formed council is charged with coordinating state environmental initiatives and advising Rhode Islanders and policymakers on how to combat the effects of climate change. Though Rhode Island agencies have been successful in working individually on climate change initiatives, the council “will provide a platform to coordinate these activities,” said Grover Fugate, executive director of the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council, according to a press release from the governor’s office. The council will be headed by Janet Coit, director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, and will comprise leaders from the Coastal Resources Management Council and the Office of Energy Resources, as well as other state agencies such as the Department
of Health and the Department of Transportation. “Rhode Island must act boldly to position the state as a national leader in climate adaptation with a comprehensive approach,” Chafee said, according to the release. Chafee also said he hopes the formation of the council will spur economic growth by attracting green energy business and “socially responsible companies” to the state, WPRO reported. The announcement took place at the West Warwick Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility. Chafee was joined by state environmental leaders and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., cochair of Congress’s bicameral Task Force on Climate Change. “Rhode Island is already seeing the effects of climate change through coastal erosion, higher risk from storm surge and shifting seasons,” Whitehouse said, according to the press release. In the past 50 years, the surface temperature of Narragansett Bay has risen by four degrees,
and the number of days with temperatures above 90 degrees has doubled. Newport’s sea level has also risen nearly 10 inches since 1930, with projections estimating a further rise of at least three feet by 2100, according to the executive order. In his annual State of the State address delivered last month, Chafee said his administration has prioritized state environmental efforts and will continue to encourage green energy initiatives such as the adoption of hydropower and wind energy sources, The Herald reported at the time. Though he will not be seeking reelection, Chafee is hopeful that his successor will embrace and maintain the new council, WPRO reported. The council is set to submit its first report with recommendations for further action to the governor’s office by May 1, with subsequent annual reports due each May, according to the executive order. — Katherine Lamb, Metro Editor
antibiotic resistance and fewer and fewer antibiotics available to treat very serious infections,” Miller said. “Over time, first-line antibiotics such as penicillin, ampicillin, tetracycline have become useless towards some bacterial strains.” Food and Water Watch has been working on the issue in Providence since January. “Our next goal is to get Senator (Sheldon) Whitehouse to hold a committee hearing to raise awareness and to get more senators on board to understand more about the issue,” Fuguitt said. “When you have a method of production that creates a public health risk, it is entirely appropriate for the government to regulate that,” Miller said. Congress is considering a bill called the Prevention of Antibiotic Resistance Act, and the House is also considering the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act. Both bills would ban the nontherapeutic agricultural use of certain antibiotics deemed most valuable for treating illnesses. “It’s going to be a long fight with lots of divested interest. The agriculture industry wants to produce as much meat as it can, while drug companies want to maintain their
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drug sales,” Fuguitt said. “Providence is truly leading the way on this issue, and it is exciting to see several students on Brown’s campus who have shown a lot of enthusiasm in working on the initiative,” he added. Fuguitt argued that there are “hidden costs that we don’t see in the equation like public health costs — last year, hospitals in Chicago spent $18 million to (prevent) the spread of disease linked to antibiotic resistance.” The National Research Council estimates that a ban on nontherapeutic use — such as the legislation currently under discussion in Congress — would increase per-capita costs by about $5 to 10 per year on agricultural products, thereby increasing prices for the average consumer. And the NRC report suggests that other methods, such as diminishing overcrowding and providing vaccinations for livestock on factory farms, could serve as alternatives to current agricultural practices that keep prices low. Providence’s resolution will ensure that the conversation over antibiotic use remains active. “It is important for communities to take sides on these issues,” said Councilman Seth Yurdin, who sponsored the resolution. “It is my hope that more cities across the country will follow suit.”
4 arts & culture
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Festival presents traditional dance to an activist rhythm Malian culture meets theme of “The Urban Body in Crisis” in Rhythm of Change festival By MICHELLE MEHRTENS CONTRIBUTING WRITER
Combining West African percussion, the chants of toddlers and the elderly and the enthusiastic dances of students and professionals, the Rhythm of Change festival celebrated the fusion of activism and Mande dance this weekend. The annual festival first began in 2010, when students from TAPS 0330: “Mande Dance, Music and Culture” worked with international social justice groups to create alliances between performers and social advocates from Mali, according to the event’s website. The festival invites artists, students and activists to engage in educational and creative workshops and shows. This year’s participants included Seydou Coulibaly, a professional Malian dancer, and was hosted by Michelle Bach-Coulibaly, senior lecturer in theater, speech and dance — both help run the Yeredon Center for Malian Arts in Bamako, Mali. “It is a co-curricular, communitybased festival heavily rooted in the Mande dance class,” she said. The course focuses largely on theatrical, cultural and traditional forms of dance, but students require a more immersive experience as well, Bach-Coulibaly said. Rhythm of Change is structured like a festival in Mali, beginning Friday afternoon and ending Sunday night, she added. A Malian festival is a “cathartic experience” in which every villager plays a part to address issues confronting the community, she said. Rhythm of Change is important because it provides exposure for West African tradition, Coulibaly said. “Not many students have a chance to go to
a Mande dance class,” he added. “It brings culture to the people.” Jamal Jackson ’00, who performed at the festival, studied dance under both Coulibaly and Bach-Coulibaly and went on to found the Jamal Jackson Dance Company. While a student at Brown, Jackson became involved in the Fusion Dance Company and New Works/World Traditions African Dance Company. “I continue to investigate the relationship between traditional and contemporary movement styles,” Jackson wrote in an email to The Herald, adding that he appreciated the effort to combine tradition with the contemporary experience. This year, the theme of Rhythm of Change was “The Urban Body in Crisis,” which, like in years past, was inspired by recent artists’ writings. “It refers to the concept that in urban centers around the world, the bodies of the people in the cities are often under siege — overcrowding, disease, police brutality (and) poverty,” wrote Gabriel Spellberg ’13.5 in an email to The Herald. Rhythm of Change focuses on “how dance can be used to resist this attack on human bodies by bringing people together to form community through the physical dancing,” he added. Because this year is Brown’s 250th anniversary, the festival coordinators sought to bring back former students involved in Mande dance who had developed their own followings, Bach-Coulibaly said, adding that more than 25 alums returned with their own work. They also invited artists with a variety of cultural experiences, like Orman Mizrani, an American Vogue Femme dancer and choreographer. Vogue Femme, a style of dance, is a “political intervention” between homophobia and the self, Bach-Coulibaly said. “It studies the feminine form in patriarchal terms and highlights the feminine and masculine in everyone.”
TOM SULLIVAN / HERALD
The Rhythm of Change festival this weekend explored methods of breaking down social issues such as homophobia, gender inequity and poverty through the prism of traditional and contemporary dance. Breakdancer Ana “Rokafella” Garcia led a panel showcasing a few clips from her documentary, which follows women in the male-dominated breakdancing world, and ended with a hip-hop lesson. Her work seeks to challenge gender norms and focuses on “renegotiating patrimonial art forms,” Bach-Coulibaly said. Other dance forms featured at the festival were house dance, hip-hop, contemporary African and traditional African dance. The “cross-gendered performances” empowered each other’s philosophies and “aesthetics of oppression,” Bach-Coulibaly explained. For example, one routine drew attention to incarceration and racial profiling. The two-year anniversary of the Malian coup d’etat also influenced the festival. In 2012, low-ranking Malian soldiers deposed the elected government due to frustration at the lack of equipment provided to fight a growing rebel movement, according to the New York Times. Jihadists invaded Mali and
destroyed music and instruments, even cutting off artists’ hands, BachCoulibaly said, adding that many artists fled to Paris or the United States or remained in refugee camps in West Africa. The festival aims to bring some of these individuals to Brown. Music has the power to spark collaboration and action, she added. For example, the youth movement in Senegal played a role in ousting the country’s president. “They rallied around young rap artists,” she said. “It’s like waking up a sleeping giant.” Many Rhythm of Change participants have their own projects in Mali to help tell the truth about the coup. For example, Brown’s Mande dance class raises money for cattle and other essential resources for villagers, BachCoulibaly said. As for next year, “things are percolating,” Bach-Coulibaly said. “Conflict resolution is something I really want to focus on.” In the future, Bach-Coulibaly said
Rhythm of Change hopes to bring hip-hop artist Amkoullel, who has captured the spirit of Malian youth who have been hurt by the country’s political instability and face a lack of education, unemployment and disenfranchisement. The festival also plans to bring Swanee Hunt, President Bill Clinton’s ambassador to Austria. Hunt founded Women Waging Peace, an organization that trains female scholars in leadership skills, Bach-Coulibaly said. Rhythm of Change “brings likeminded people together who realize the power of celebration,” Bach-Coulibaly said. Her favorite moments as a professor involve watching people who have never met make connections and forge new relationships, she said. Rhythm of Change opens up a space for negotiation and dialogue. “These are things I love, things I will fight for, to see that happen,” she said. “It is important to create a space for Brown students to come home and dance together.”
» RAMEN, from page 1
you ever seen do it,” as Kanye would say. The sparingly used sauce complements the perfectly seasoned meat without overwhelming it. Diners might only wish for a bit more pork — the portion is rather small compared to the amount of bun. Three bites of the pork teases the palate and begs for more. The cha shu curry don is also on point, with a mild but flavorful curry over bits of barbecued pork and steamed rice. The curry’s spice is further softened by a peanut sauce — essentially natural peanut butter without the sweetener — served alongside the dish or kicked up a notch with a yummy pepper sauce. Either way, the dish features more pork, which, at Ken’s, is really all you could want. The entrees include Ken’s paitan ramen, a chicken-based dish, and Ken’s tan tan mazemen, a soupless ramen. The paitan ramen with chicken
tastes close to the popular, microwavable ramen. It’s good in that you get what you expect — something very similar to chicken noodle soup — but if you are looking for a unique dish, the tan tan mazemen is a far better choice. It highlights many of the restaurant’s strengths: Its thick, fresh noodles excellently hold the dish’s rich flavors. The ramen noodles’ texture also complements the tender pork, which is deliciously more present here than in the appetizers. Fresh vegetables offset the richness of the noodles and pork, ensuring the hearty dish isn’t overwhelming. And when you’re full, definitely ask for a doggy bag — the servings are generous, and it would be sinful to abandon any of these noodles to a landfill.
the meal, Ken’s serves a yaki-buta bun — a pork bun, though a vegetarian bun is also available — and cha shu curry don. The appetizers arrive within a few minutes of being seated, which, combined with the wait staff ’s respectful persistence, hints at the restaurant’s quick-turnaround business model. The vibe already precludes it from serving couples looking for a romantic night on the town, and the small space is certainly not designed for lengthy meals. Yet for college students craving comfort food served alongside some fantastic beats, Ken’s Ramen far exceeds expectations. The yaki-buta comes with a sliver of juicy and tender barbecued pork adorned with an orange sauce that tastes surprisingly similar to chipotle mayo over a thick, soft steamed bun. When it comes to pork buns, Ken’s Ramen will “do it better than anybody
Ken’s Ramen. 69 Washington St. 6-10 p.m. Pre-soft opening Tuesday through Saturday until March 1. www.kenramenpvd.com.
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
menu SHARPE REFECTORY
LUNCH Butternut Squash Cannelloni, Pepperoni, Spinach and Feta Calzone, Stir Fried Carrots with Lemon and Dill
Buffalo Wings, Kale and Linguica Soup, Cheesy Zucchini Casserole, Vegan Garden Chili
DINNER Apricot Beef with Sesame Noodles, Black Thai Rice, Vegetables in Honey Ginger Sauce
Grits Souffle, Tortellini Italiano, Candied Yams, Cauliflower Au Gratin, Green Peas, Cajun Apple Cake
QUESADILLA OR GRILLED CHEESE
Stuffed French Toast
Spinach and Feta, Sausage and Lentil, Three Bean Chili
Chicken Curry with Potatoes, Vegetables Cooked with Lentils
ARJUN NARAYEN / HERALD
This sculpture in the Perry and Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts embodies the Chinese tradition of Gongshi, or Scholar’s Rocks, that depicts mythological mountains. Scholar’s Rocks aim to evoke emotion.
comics Cat Ears | Najatee’ McNeil ‘17
Bacterial Culture | Dana Schwartz ‘15
6:30 P.M. SCIENCE COMMUNICATIONS TALK - ALAN LIGHTMAN
Visiting Professor of English Alan Lightman will give a talk about science communication as part of the Great Brown Nonfiction Writers’ Lecture Series. Brown/RISD Hillel, Winnick Chapel 8 P.M. THE 2014 R.I. GOVERNOR’S RACE: WHO’S IT GOING TO BE? A BROWN DEMS MEDIA PANEL
Rhode Island journalists Ted Nesi from WPRI.com, Ian Donnis from Rhode Island Public Radio and Ed Fitzpatrick from the Providence Journal will discuss the Rhode Island governor’s race. Wilson 101
4 P.M. MUSICAL TALK WITH MOHSEN NAMJOO: “IRANIAN RHYTHMS”
Mohsen Namjoo, Iranian musician and artist in residence of Middle East Studies for 2014, will hold a talk about Middle Eastern music. Grant Recital Hall 5 P.M. DAVID KERTZER - THE POPE AND MUSSOLINI
National Book Award finalist David Kertzer will discuss his research about Pope Pius XI’s secret relations with Italian dictator Benito Mussolini. Four other panelists will weigh in on the discussion. Watson Institute, Joukowsky Forum
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Ramping up rural recruitment The University is making a measured attempt to recruit students from rural areas, beyond the major cities from which many Brown students hail. “There are wildly talented students all over the country, and it’s our responsibility to make Brown accessible,” Dean of Admission ’73 recently told The Herald. We believe the effort to bring in students from underrepresented, rural and often low-income backgrounds is crucial in increasing diversity on campus, and the University must be willing to devote a substantial amount of resources to achieve this long-term endeavor. According to the University’s Admission website, the undergraduate student body represents all 50 states and hails from 104 countries. In terms of geographic reach, the student body is incredibly diverse, but some U.S. states receive far more representation than others. Unsurprisingly, the overwhelming majority of Brown students hail from the nation’s major cities and surrounding suburbs. As The Herald reported Friday, the four most represented states in the 2018 applicant pool — California, New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey — also comprise almost half of the overall domestic applicant pool. In comparison, few students hail from the Midwest, Central and Mountain regions and even fewer still from these rural areas. If fewer students hail from Kansas than one can count on two hands, there is still significant work to be done. The Office of Admission has begun efforts to counter the obstacles that make recruiting in rural areas difficult. To begin, many rural students simply do not have Brown on their radars. For many of these high school students, attending an elite private institution does not seem desirable or attainable. Many factors, including societal expectations, educational opportunities and monetary resources, contribute to this norm. Many rural students are often hesitant to apply to an institution like Brown. Providence may seem like an overwhelming city for those who have grown up and spent their whole lives in small towns. As The Herald reported, some students worry about experiencing the “East Coast culture shock” that comes with such a transition. In addition, many low-income students perceive that Brown is a place full of wealth and privilege, an undesirable and intimidating environment that is extremely different from their home towns. The University has begun implementing outreach programs in order to spread knowledge about Brown to underrepresented areas. Miller has announced the Admission Office’s attempts to raise awareness in rural areas by traveling and using the Internet and other electronic means to penetrate hard-to-reach areas. Admission officers also must raise awareness about the University’s generous financial aid policies and be ready to provide that monetary support to lowincome students. It will be crucial to spread the message that contrary to popular notions of wealth, 49 percent of the class of 2017 is actually receiving some type of need-based aid and the average package is over $40,000. Despite the University’s efforts, there is work to be done, and Brown is not alone in targeting underrepresented areas to recruit students. At a recent White House summit on college costs, over 100 institutions projected their plans to expand financial assistance and outreach programs to lower-income and underrepresented areas. Yale announced a partnership with Harvard, Princeton and the University of Virginia that will “conduct outreach sessions in 18 cities where they don’t typically receive many applications, some of which are in Arkansas and South Texas,” CNN reported. These efforts illustrate a truth Brown admission officers are keenly aware of: Rural areas are untapped resources home to some extremely intelligent individuals who simply lack the information and resources to reach elite private institutions. Ramping up outreach programs and financial aid will be essential to bringing these students to Providence and creating a more diverse, talented and innovative student body.
A N G E L IA WA N G
CORRECTION An article in Monday’s Herald (“Social venture ideas spotlighted at Ashoka U Exchange,” Feb. 24) misidentified Diana Wells’ position. She is the president of Ashoka, not Ashoka U. The article also misidentified one of the three members of the Ashoka U Exchange’s “President Panel.” It was University of Northampton Vice Chancellor Nick Petford, not President Christina Paxson. The Herald regrets the errors.
Q U O T E O F T H E D AY
“I’ve mastered the slip dance.” — Takeru Nagayoshi ’14
See snow on page 2.
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THE BROWN DAILY HERALD TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Little senior lost
CARA NEWLON opinions columnist
I’m a senior and I already regret everything I ever studied at college. “A history major, eh,” says my uncle. We’re at a family event over winter break, and I’m getting quizzed on my future. “Sounds like a recipe for law school to me.” I gulp and start to chew on a loose strand of my hair. “Well, you know I majored in literary arts, too.” My weak attempt at humor. “You know, there’s a special field for the economics of history.” My uncle just won’t quit. “Econometrics. Very marketable.” When we first arrived at Brown as wide-eyed first-years, Ruth Simmons told us that we should follow our passions, enjoy our time here, take the little quiet moments between classes to sit on the green to pursue our private projects — the short film, the future bestselling novel, the nonprofit for inner-city high school kids. Follow our dreams. It’s not a new message. Heck, we’ve been told that everyone is special since Barney. But lately I’ve begun to feel like following my dreams is going to land me on the streets of New York, penniless, without even a gutter boyfriend to comfort me. I studied the liberal arts, and now it’s coming back to bite me in the ass. I should have
majored in engineering or computer science or economics. “I promise you, folks can make a lot more, potentially, with skilled manufacturing or the trades than they might with an art history degree,” said President Obama at a Wisconsin General Electric Plant Jan. 30. ET TU, OBAMA? I already have to deal with obnoxious questions from family. Whatever happened to the hope? Yes, engineering and tech degrees pay more directly out of college, but a recent study by the Asso-
of 35 recruiting businesses. For the liberal artsminded, that’s slim pickings. And our career advisers, expert at reorganizing our resumes, offer little more help for finding jobs than, “Use LinkedIn and Twitter.” Increasingly, I’ve noticed my peers strive for jobs they would have scoffed at our first year: management consulting, finance, lawyerdom. Brown students go directly from college to medical school without ever working in a clinic, and burn out booking 80-plus hours a week on Wall Street. Some people like consulting, finance and law
We’re so terribly young. We can do anything. We shouldn’t sell out. ciation of American Colleges indicated that overall average salary outcomes for humanities and social sciences majors are around the same in peak earning ages — from 56 to 60. Moreover, 93 percent of employers surveyed indicated that a candidate’s critical thinking and social skills were more important than their major. The notion that a concentration determines your destiny is farcical. At Brown, we’re encouraged to study what we love and follow our dreams from day one. But nobody gave us an answer about what to do if we didn’t discover our dream, or if that passion didn’t find us. And the options that the CareerLAB offers us are extremely limited: Last week’s general career fair featured 25 technology companies out
school. That’s fine. It’s more than fine, it’s great! They’re prestigious, challenging fields with a huge payoff. But I get the sense that my fellow students enter them not out of some great passion or interest, but for the sense of security that comes with a six-figure salary and a two-year plan. We’re lost. So instead, we turn to the casework books. I don’t pretend to know what I’m doing any more than the next person. But sometimes I wonder: Why are we selling out for high-paying jobs with questionable social value? What happened to those first-years interested in art and altruism? I understand the lure of Wall Street, the attraction of Bain, JP Morgan Chase and McKinsey. This
isn’t the ’90s. People are struggling. But Brown students are among the most — here’s that obnoxious Brown buzzword — privileged in the world. Most of us financially, yes, but all of us privileged by virtue of the talent and intelligence that allowed us to attend an institution like Brown in the first place. If we can’t afford to take some time to try different careers post-college and fight for something we love, who can? I’m a senior and I’m terrified. I’m terrified of waking up in May and being forced out of my comfortable bubble, without my friends and my teachers and Health Services to treat every nervous tickle in the back of my throat. I don’t want to worry about rent, insurance and online dating. I love Brown. And I know my fellow seniors are also scared. We’re struggling to find what we want from life. But I know I don’t want a boring life. I want to have an interesting job, one that I wake up in the morning and feel excited about. If it turns out that’s consulting or finance, so be it. But I don’t want to pigeonhole myself with graduate school or consulting or Wall Street prematurely. I don’t want to look back 20 years from now and have regrets. We’re so terribly young. We can do anything. We shouldn’t sell out. Let’s wait until we’re 25 to do that.
Cara Newlon ’14 is a little to completely lost, but hoping for the best.
An immigrant America NICO ENRIQUEZ opinions columnist
What if I told you there were only one thing you needed to do to own American politics for the next 50 years? The Pew Research Center estimates that at current rates of immigration, 19 percent of our residents will be foreign-born by 2050. Hispanics, many of whom constitute one of our dominant immigration groups, will balloon to 29 percent of the population. Naturalized Asians, the group that has the highest average income, will rise to 9 percent of the population. And white Americans, a group that makes up 87 percent of Congress and whose ancestors were themselves immigrants, will constitute less than half of the population. Immigrants — and their children — are our future voters. They are also the future engine of our economic growth. They will decide the direction of our country. Therefore, it is in our best interest to set the foundations now for a mutually prosperous future for current citizens and immigrants. Congress needs to make sure that we give immigrants a chance to succeed in the United States even as it ensures that our citizens can compete and prosper alongside the new groups. We must learn from the history of the founding of our immigrant nation and the racial division that has caused so many of our current and past national issues. If we, immigrants and multigenerational Americans, can unify around our flag or at the very least our shared economic fortune, we can win the future. The first step in peaceful coexistence is making sure we retain the immigrants who will make the most jobs. So why do we treat these future decision-makers like second-class cit-
izens? Every time I talk to a foreigner at Brown, Harvard, Yale, the University of Virginia, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and similar schools, I am stunned. Every single person is worried about finding a job that would provide a visa after school. It is absurd that we educate these people and give them the tools they need to build our great nation and then we say, “Eh, you’re not that valuable to us, we may just kick you out.” What is the rationale? Well, our representatives supposedly speak for their constituents, and those constituents believe outside competition for local jobs isn’t good for their bottom line. Logically, the idea that more foreigners — and therefore more competition for jobs — are harmful to “true citizens” makes sense. But that belief could not be more wrong. Our population needs to know this. Despite the current headwind provided by the government, many immigrants still stay. And they produce. In 2011, more than 75 percent of the patents filed by the top 10 patentproducing universities in the United States included one or more immigrant inventors. In addition, beyond the highly skilled immigrants, the Bipartisan Policy Center estimates that immigration reform for all skill levels would improve our economic growth by 4.8 percent and lower our deficit by $1.2 trillion over 20 years. The chief actuary for the Social Security Administration, Stephen Gross, has independently confirmed the deficit-reducing power of immigration — in this case undocumented immigration. In a rare moment of sunshine for our dysfunctional Social Security program, his research has found that undocumented immigrants annually contribute $15 billion to Social Security but receive only $1 billion in benefits from the program. This surplus has accumulated like snowpack in pre-
global warming Antarctica to the degree that undocumented immigrants have contributed $300 billion, or 10 percent, of the $2.7 trillion in our Social Security Trust Fund. On top of its deficit-reducing power, the Bipartisan Policy Center recently declared that immigration reform would result in wage increases for American citizens because immigrant labor can fill the jobs Americans will not take — like construction site cleanup. As a result of such complementary labor, the residential housing sector — a crucial driver of U.S. economic growth — would grow by $69 billion a year. These findings are directly in line
Congress must address its constituents’ concerns if it is to successfully reform immigration. with the consensus among economists that immigration reform would have a positive effect on our economy. Heidi Shierholz of the Economic Policy Institute last year told the New York Times that the idea that immigrants at every skill level help the economy is “not controversial” and that there is a “clearly positive” effect of increased immigration on family incomes in the United States. In addition, it has been estimated that up to half of the entrepreneurs and founders behind our new tech companies — think Sergei Brin of Google — are immigrants. These companies have been a source of real and massive growth through production and innovation, rather than consumption. Millions of high-
quality jobs have been created as a result. Clearly, regardless of their level of skill or documentation, immigrants are a massive engine of growth for our economy. So why do so many Americans think immigration is bad for their wallets, and what can this teach us about our future policy decisions? Gordon Hanson, an economist at the University of California at San Diego, has followed this issue closely for years. His research has found that there are two different groups that feel threatened by immigration: lowskilled workers, like high school dropouts, who feel they may be pushed out of jobs, and people of all education levels in states that offer extensive social programs to their residents. The objections of these two groups must be answered for the U.S. population to live in peaceful coexistence. Congress must address its constituents’ concerns if it is to successfully reform immigration and harness the economic power of immigrants. To ensure that low-skilled workers still have economic opportunities afforded to people with certain levels of education, Congress could offer free online high school curricula that have been constructed and peer-reviewed by premier public and private schools. The schools would gain prestige or tax dollars. The new students would improve their social capital and employability, and it would be easy to implement widely for a low cost. Corporations could partner with the government to seek out and hire employees directly from the ranks of graduates. An obvious subsequent step would be a secondary partnership in which the government and premier universities would create a distilled online college program — a one- or twoyear mini bachelor’s degree. Based on scores and employee assessments, corporations could use these courses as a net to catch hidden talent and
intelligence and put people on a fast track to climb the management structure. Upward mobility would drastically increase. This initiative would also strengthen these companies by providing them with intelligent and driven individuals who are loyal to the company and have a very different perspective on the world because of their alternative route to management. If these programs were successful, our government could expand them and offer them to all our citizens. The second area that must be addressed is the burden of undocumented immigrants on local governments. The answer to this issue is obvious: Provide undocumented immigrants with the legal standing and a path to citizenship offered in the Senate’s recent immigration bill. Immigrants will support their own weight on a local and federal level. Local citizens won’t be left with the fiscal burden. This rationale may be why a recent New York Times poll found that 83 percent of Americans support a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented migrants already in the country as long as they learn English and pay back taxes. There are many more things we can do to ensure that the United States and its shifting demographics can prosper. The above are just two obvious solutions that might work. The political party that ensures our countrymen can peacefully and profitably coexist will help us maintain our dynamism and success through currents of change. If we can live together, our nation of immigrants past and present will win the future.
“A swallow does not a summer make,” though it seems like politicians disagree. Nico Enriquez ’16 may be reached at email@example.com.
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2014
BROWN DAILY HERALD arts & culture String of ‘cultural phenomena’ fails to tie exhibit together
Alumni Anniversary Exhibition suffers from disorganized exhibition design By MARCUS SUDAC STAFF WRITER
In List Art Center hangs something of a college reunion — Dawn Clements ’86, Paul Ramirez Jonas ’87 and Kerry Tribe ’97 were all invited back to their alma mater by the Department of Visual Arts in anticipation of the University’s 250th anniversary celebration. The unfortunate aspect of the Alumni Anniversary Exhibition is its lack of clear coordination. It is not so much the art as the exhibit design itself — which is an aesthetic and aural cacophony, loosely tied together by the vague string of “cultural phenomena,” according to the exhibit description. The exhibit begins in the List lobby with the works of Jonas, an artist who “explores social relations as an artistic medium,” according to his gallery bio. “The Commons” — an equestrian model made up entirely of cork and pushpins — invites visitors to attach messages to the object in order to facilitate a social conversation. Another, “Assembly,” layers blueprints of the Globe Theater, the U.S. Senate chamber and suburban households. Isolated, Jonas’ works are
» MAGAZINES, from page 1 Sierra Leone, said she wanted to explore and express her own identity as a first-generation American, as well as her experience at Brown. “Statistically, we’re all seen as black, but that’s not the case,” she added. Gregory Stewart ’17, who has submitted photographs to the magazine, said he was mostly attracted to OBSIDIAN because it provides a unique venue for expression of black literary arts on campus. The blog’s current online platform, Tumblr, allows for greater interactivity and intimacy, said Finoh. “We have a big focus on black image, on black visibility,” Jones said. “With the Tumblr, we were able to incorporate that more by showing people’s faces and showing people’s art,” she added. The three co-editors of the magazine review and revise submissions on a rolling basis before posting them to the website, Morris said. “I’m really not about editing too deeply,” she added. “This is what your art is, and that’s how it stands.” Each of the three has a different sub-section of the magazine, Jones said. She focuses on black female identity, Finoh concentrates on transnationalism and Morris specializes in queer identity. OBSIDIAN aims to highlight intersectionality, including a focus on issues not normally attributed specifically to people of color
a sound treatise on social interactions and the commercialism attached to the practice. But then there’s everything else. Inside the actual David Winton Bell Gallery, the stark sketches of Clements are an immediately repelling force. Her works are inspired by the “hyperrealism” of cinema, but her use of abstraction obscures these intentions. Each of Clements’ sketches consumes an entire wall and offsets the crowded activity of Jonas’ pieces. The exhibition organizers argue representations of “cultural phenomena” link these artists, but the connection is vague at best. Clements’ finest piece is “Grass,” a gyrating bloom of greenery, suggesting a cosmic wholeness that the other pieces in the exhibition lack. Alone, this piece is impeccable — but what is it doing alongside Jonas’ social analysis? And then there is the aural havoc raging in the next room. Tribe installed two video pieces on the subject of collective memory. His film features maudlin performances and kitschy conventions as a method to explore recycled culture. The sound generated by these gun-toting scandals and soap opera tropes bleeds into Clements’ domain, and the aural spillover disrupts the fragile stoicism that Clements’ works demand. Overall, the spatial dynamic of the Alumni Anniversary Exhibition is dissonant and painful, marring otherwise impactful pieces on social construction and cultural representation.
like feminism, sexism and queerness, Finoh said. The magazine solicits submissions and readership from all students, not only students of color. “OBSIDIAN will be seen by students who aren’t necessarily black, and hopefully they’ll learn from it and gain a better understanding of what blackness means,” Finoh said. “We’re asking that question of ourselves every day.” Black students’ voices tend to be marginalized, said Armani Madison ’16, a contributor who has also submitted works for other publications — including as a former Herald opinions columnist — but said he was attracted to OBSIDIAN because it focuses specifically on the African diaspora. “I think it’s especially poignant and very important for this literary publication to exist, because it allows us to share our ideas and our creativity,” he said. “A lot of voices can become kind of invisible on campus with so many people,” said Taylor Michael ’17, who submitted an autobiographical piece to OBSIDIAN. “This is specifically a magazine for black experiences and black voices, and that makes it easier to put those personal narratives out there,” Morris said. As for the future, Morris said she hopes to establish a print edition of the magazine, host release parties and invite people to share their work in person. Finoh added that she has started conversations with friends
CORRINE SZCZESNY / HERALD
“The Commons,” by Paul Ramirez Jonas ’87, encourages onlookers to attach messages to the cork-and-pushpin equestrian model in an effort to promote social conversation.
CORRINE SZCZESNY / HERALD
Dawn Clements’“Mrs. Jessica Drummond’s (My Reputation, 1946)” is part of the Alumni Anniversary Exhibition, which organizers posit is united by a broad theme of “cultural phenomena.”
beyond the Brown community and hopes to eventually receive work from other universities. “I hope that OBSIDIAN in the future gives us all something to bond over as a black community and that we all really feel comfortable and open with it,” Jones said. Planes, trains and automobiles Vagabond Magazine, which focuses on travel writing and narratives, launched Thursday. Vagabond is “a resource for Brown students who want to travel but don’t really know where to start,” said Eugenia Lulo ’16, managing editor and co-founder of the publication. The magazine also serves as an outlet for students who want to share their personal stories from their travels and time abroad, she added. Vagabond was founded by a group of four friends inspired by the idea of a magazine dedicated to travel. “We got the idea end of freshman year,” said Katharina Goetzeler ’16, one of the co-founders and current business manager of Vagabond. “There were so many international student groups, all these clubs, but no publication where people can talk about culture and travel.” The group saw an opening for this type of publication and planned the magazine through the spring and summer. It was officially categorized as a student group last semester, but its structure remains relatively informal
— there are three managing editors, a business manager and a team of section editors, Lulo said. After submitting three stories, writers become staff members. “We got (an) overwhelming response, way more than we thought we would,” Lulo said. Vagabond comprises five sections: travel, features, arts and culture, cuisine and events. Goetzeler said editors accept a diverse array of writing, including event reviews, blog posts and photo essays. “We want it to be a fun read,” she added. Kutay Onayli ’17, who is from Turkey, contributed two articles to the magazine — one about his hometown of Istanbul and another about a celebrated Turkish poet, Nazim Hikmet. “I think even though in terms of size it’s pretty small, the international student community here has a lot to contribute in terms of campus culture, in terms of literary culture,” he said, adding that he felt his Turkish identity inspired his work. But Lulo emphasized that the magazine is not solely for international students and their experiences, though her Dominican identity informed her perspective on the value of an outlet for travel writing. Vagabond’s category one status means it can place announcements in Morning Mail, book rooms and hold events, but receives no funding. Goetzeler said she envisions a monthly
print issue in the future. Though it is difficult to find a place amid the multiplicity of publications on campus, she added that she is not concerned about Vagabond establishing a strong foothold because it caters to a significant interest in the student body. “I think it’s refreshing that there’s this constant drive to encourage the publication of art on various campuses,” said Christopher Anderson ’14, leader of Clerestory Journal of the Arts, the oldest literary magazine on campus.“A lot of the journals here (at Brown) have a sort of niche, and ours is that we do everything,” he said. Clerestory publishes poetry, artwork and more traditional narratives, he said. “I think there are a lot (of publications on campus) but I think there can always be more avenues for students … to share what they’re doing,” said Todd Stong ’14, leader of Issues Magazine, another literary publication that accepts poetry, fiction and nonfiction writing. “I think it’s important that we have an outlet … something specifically designed to celebrate (another) side of Brown, to spread a message of global citizenship,” Onayli said. “It’s almost overdue, in a way, having this magazine,” he added. “It’s not necessarily about the international aspect of it,” Goetzeler said. “It’s about culture and experiencing culture.”